5 Android Apps from Google You Might Not Know About

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We all know Google has a lot of top notch services and app solutions available – Some are self-developed, others are bought. But there are actually some gems lying around which are not actively communicated by Google. You won’t find a post about them and if you don’t have a Nexus devices, chances are slim that you have ever encountered some of these underdogs. However if you have an up-to-date OS like KitKat you will still be able to run those, no matter who your smartphone built.

Mostly these were reviewed on Android but some of them are also available on iOS via the iTunes App Store. So just try your luck – Google is usually doing well on the multiplatform service distribution so there’s a chance.

So let me introduce you to our 2014 Top 5 Google Underground Apps:

Google Opinion Rewards app logo high resolution1 – Google Opinion Rewards

This is a really handy underdog app. What does it do? Basically it is a service that runs in the background and throws a notification at you everytime Google wants your opinion on a survey – and they pay you for it.

After a quick test to check that you are a normal human and not a gold-farming bot you are ready to go. Even in our relatively short review we already got one survey with a single question to answer and directly got 50 cents on our Google Play account which can be used for anything within Google Play.

google-opinion-review-survey-app-umfrage-screenshots-example

With this Google is offering a  really nice service and generously rewarding their user’s opinion on all types of matters.

Check it out here on Google Play


Google cardboard app logo high resolution2 – Cardboard

With the Cardboard app you can utilise some of the Google services in a virtual reality mode. You just follow the instruction on how to build your own DIY VR kit from cardboard and attach it to your smartphone for a unique experience that might even rival cutting edge developments like from Oculus.

As per Google, the following features have been made available until now:

  • Earth: Fly where your fancy takes you on Google Earth.
  • Tour Guide: Visit Versailles with a local guide.
  • YouTube: Watch popular YouTube videos on a massive screen.
  • Exhibit: Examine cultural artifacts from every angle.
  • Photo Sphere: Look around the photo spheres you’ve captured.
  • Street Vue: Drive through Paris on a summer day.
  • Windy Day: Follow the story (and the hat) in this interactive animated short from Spotlight Stories.

Check it out here on Google Play


Google my business app logo high resolution3 – Google My Business

My Business is a Google+ client for your business page on Google’s home social network. It focuses on statistics, interaction and insight and can run next to your personal Google+ client app without any issues.

google my business app screenshots

Share your latest business news with your fans and stakeholders, read and respond to reviews of customers and set up notification about activities that are relevant for you.

Check it out here on Google Play


Google camera app logo high resolution4 – Google Camera

This is the first time Google has put it’s brand on a camera app and offer it regardless of the smartphone’s manufacturer. This might not be new to people who use a Nexus but for all the Samsung, HTC, ZTE, etc. fans it should be interesting to compare it to the stock camera app of their phone.google camera app screenshots

These are the features that are already supported:

  • Simple Interface – Capture photos and video quickly with Google Camera’s simple and intuitive interface
  • Lens Blur – Manipulate the camera’s depth of field using Lens Blur to focus on the subject in the foreground and blur the background; great for portraits and selfies
  • Photo Stitching – Create amazing 360° Photo Sphere, panoramas, wide angle and fisheye image captures with Google’s photo stitching technology developed for Google Maps
  • Video – Shoot video and simultaneously capture stills just by tapping on the screen
  • Android Wear – Control the camera from a distance
  • HDR+ – Use the HDR+ (High Dynamic Range) setting to improve images captured in low light, and backlit scenes (only available on Nexus 5 and Nexus 6)

If you are an Android Wear user you can even use your smartwatch as remote shutter triggering device for all the shots you want to take from a distance.

Check it out here on Google Play


Google snapseed app logo high resolution5 – Snapseed

Snapseed is a photo editing suite that Google has acquired from Nik Software. After the acquisition it got a little quiet on the PR side of things for Snapseed but Google took all the great underlying technology and added its usual Google goodness into it with native interoperability to other Google services like Google Camera or Google+ and streamlined the creative process significantly. So you can go from snapshot to refining a masterpiece and finally posting it on your social media channels without struggle.

google snapseed app screenshots

From an UX perspective it excels on tablets but it also does a great job on smartphones. Here are some of the benefits which this solution is being praised for:

  • Easily adjust your photos with a single tap using Auto Correct
  • Tweak your photo to perfection with Tune Image
  • Use Selective Adjust to enhance specific objects or areas in your photos
  • Experiment with fun & innovative filters like Drama, Vintage, Grunge, and Tilt-Shift
  • Add Image Borders for a finishing touch
  • Share your creations via Google+, email, and any other service you have installed.

Check it out here on Google Play


Google_Santa_Tracker_2013_Large_IconSeasonal Extra – Google Santa Tracker

Okay this is a bit of a fun app but hey – why not? It’s the right season so without further ado…

The Google Santa Tracker app helps you follow Santa Claus on his journey around the world on Christmas time. Only 22 days more until Santa departs so make sure to grab this app in time.

google santa tracker app screenshots

Check it out here on Google Play


We hope you enjoyed our Google Underdog line-up 2014 and maybe you will give one or two of these a chance by trying them out. Let us know how they worked for you in the comments below. Looking forward to hear your feedback!

Photo credit: Google / Kham Tran

Christopher Isak

Christopher Isak

Managing Editor at TechAcute
Hi there and thanks for reading my article! I'm Chris. I write about technology news and share experiences from my life in the enterprise world. I love readers who leave a comment. 😉
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Christopher Isak

Hi there and thanks for reading my article! I’m Chris. I write about technology news and share experiences from my life in the enterprise world. I love readers who leave a comment. ;)

3 thoughts on “5 Android Apps from Google You Might Not Know About

  • December 1, 2014 at 7:36 pm
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    The only app I’m familiar with on this list is Google Camera. You’ve totally peaked my interest and I’m going to get all of these (even the Santa Tracker tee hee). You know more about Android apps than anyone I know (especially the office and productivity apps). I think you should write about them more often. That would really help a lot of people (like me). Hahahahaha 🙂 Thank you for another interesting article, Chris. 🙂

    Reply
    • December 2, 2014 at 5:31 pm
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      Hi Diana! I’m glad you approve of these. 🙂

      I’m glad if there were some secret gems for you as well in this list. Knowing you are the Google monster, I didn’t expect that to be the case. 🙂

      I love the productivity apps but I feel like currently there are not much innovations in this sphere but if I spot any cool ones I will make sure to introduce you to them. 🙂

      Thanks for reading!

      Reply
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